Nordic Oikos 2020 Conference

Reykjavík sculpture

We held our fourth biennial conference, Nordic Oikos 2020, in Iceland. Here's a report from the host society:

The Icelandic Ecological Society (VistÍs) organised the fourth NSO conference in Reykjavík 3-5 March 2020. The main theme of the conference was Ecology in the Anthropocene.

The 150 talks and 130 poster presentations on a range of ecological topics were framed by four excellent keynote talks addressing ecological predictability, new approaches to studies of impacts of global change on nature, humans as a part of nature and how to sustainably manage human interactions with nature.

A final lecture by the Icelandic writer Andri Snær Magnason entitled “Words vs. Nature in the big paradigm shift. How to talk about the change that is bigger than language.” was thought-provoking, setting the scene for the concluding panel discussion on ecology in the Anthropocene and the responsibilities of ecologists.

The conference was held in the shadow of the rising COVID-19 epidemic. The organisers discussed the issue with the venue Harpa ahead of the conference. Together we made sure that all measures that were recommended at that time to minimise the infection risk were taken. Luckily, no cases were traced to the conference.

It was a great challenge for our small society to organise the conference and a perfect way to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of VistÍs. The organisers want to thank all the 350 participants for contributing to the success of the conference.

—Ingibjörg Svala Jónsdóttir, Icelandic Ecological Society, Chair of the Nordic Oikos 2020 Organizing Committee